The original plan on Sunday was to go to the Phoenix over on 19th and Valencia for brunch and then walk over to Sports Basement with Sweetie so he could get his pannier fixed.
But then there was a coffee complaint and the plan switched to going to eat at one of the cafés further down 16th on the way to Sports Basement (which actually turned out to be a ways beyond it).
We ended up at Sally’s, out at De Haro off of 16th, where we were met with sun, outdoor seating, and lots of customers. The menu looked good (“mmmm, you should order the Nutella pancakes”) and there was a sweet, comforting breakfast smell circulating inside so things started out on the right note.
Ordering ended up being a challenge, not because it was complicated—you go up to cash register, you place an order and you pay—but because there was some woman holding up the line making too many requests and amendments. But we finally made it and we ordered the Huevos Rancheros and Sweetie got banana walnut pancakes with a side of eggs and bacon. We also both got coffee and OJ.
So here’s the wrap-up: it was fine, but it wasn’t great. Our Huevos Rancheros were missing a beat. All of the components were there–black beans, eggs, guac, sour cream, salsa, and tortillas–but they were kind of just there on the plate waiting to be arranged into a full-blown meal. That, and we wanted everything to have a bit more spunk, more spice, more a-ha! It wasn’t tasteless, but it didn’t excite either. Sweetie said his pancakes were okay (seems worth noting that the bananas and walnuts were sprinkled on top of regular flap jacks not actually mixed in the batter). The OJ was good, but the coffee wasn’t worth nixing brunch at the Phoenix.
The atmosphere, on the other hand, delivered. The restaurant is airy and open and there’s a large, interesting mechanical mural gracing the main wall. In all honesty there’s not much else going on out at De Haro and 16th Street so what Sally’s lacks in foodie flare they make up for with convenience.
Phoenix Bar & Irish Gathering Place [MenuPages]
Phoenix Bar & Irish Gathering Place [Official Site]
[Photo: Via sekimura/flickr]